Posts Tagged ‘veggie dish’

Veggie Dish #8 – Massaged Kale Salad

Kale is good for you. It’s leafy greens, and how many of us couldn’t use more leafy greens in our life? I know I don’t get enough. However, it also has a bitter bite to it that makes it tough for some people to get.

I drink it in green smoothies pretty regularly, but that’s not my favorite way to get them by any means. About a year ago or so, I came across a recipe from the blog of one of my favorite vegans, Kristen Suzanne. If you don’t know her blog, she’s worth reading, whether you are a vegan or not. I am not a vegan, but I LOVE finding delicious vegan recipes because they are usually, calorie dense or not, immensely healthy. Unfortunately, I’ve made more than one vegan recipe that tastes like crap. Not so with Kristen Suzanne. She makes recipes that even this omnivore finds delicious.

Anyway, I used one of her recipes this week for a kale salad that I have not had in a long time. She calls it a Candy Kale Salad, and for good reason. She’s found a way to take kale with its bitter bite and make it taste sweet.

To start off with, take some kale and wash it.

This next part is the magical step that takes kale from bitter to amazing, healthy food. Take lemon juice, olive oil, and salt. (I used pink Himalayan crystal salt.)

Tear the kale up into nice, salad-sized chunks. (I got rid of the stems. I can take them in my green smoothies or dehydrated kale chips. I can’t in a raw salad.)

Toss some lemon juice and olive oil (about a tablespoon each, give or take) and some salt onto the kale. With your bare hands, massage it into the kale. This doesn’t have to be a neat process. I just squeezed and scrunched and played with the kale until it all looked nicely coated and felt like I had given it a good workout. It took maybe a minute or two.

The hard part is over. Now the fun part. Put some fruity, salady stuff on top of it. There’s no way to go wrong here. For this salad, I used grapes, frozen blueberries, frozen blackberries (picked locally from a friend’s mother’s backyard last summer), some chopped pineapple, and a little coconut. You could also add tomatoes, avocado, sunflower seeds, mandarin oranges… the sky is literally the limit. Anything that you would like to eat in a sweet-ish salad, you can put in here.

Even if you don’t like greens, you should consider trying this salad. Crazy easy, crazy good for you, and crazy tasty. Definitely a winner.

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Veggie Dish #7 – Honeyed Parsnips

In an effort to eat more vegetables, we’re expanding out to vegetables and fruits that we have never eaten. I personally hope to get the chance to try Durian some time this year, even though I’ve heard it’s quite unpleasant and I have NO idea where I could even buy it.

But there are some vegetables that I see every week at Kroger or Wal-Mart, and I’ve decided it’s time to try a more common vegetable.

This week.. parsnips!

They look like white carrots, and they have a vague carrot-y smell, too.

I went to allrecipes.com, my go-to when I need to find a random recipe, and I found a nice one for honeyed parsnips. I like honey; this should be good, right? And it was crazy easy, which is a plus.

To start with, you just peel and wash five or so parsnips.

Dice them up.

Mix one tablespoon of melted butter, 1/2 cup of hot water, and 1/2 cup of honey. Toss in the parsnips and bake at 350 for thirty minutes or until soft.

The verdict?

Parsnips are gross.

The honey was a nice flavor, but the horseradish-y carrot-y flavor just wasn’t that pleasant. I might try these again another way, but for now, all I can say is that I know why my mother never forced this awful vegetable on me as a child.

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Veggie Dish #6 – Healthy Jalapeno Poppers

I cannot take credit for this recipe. I read about it on Hungry Girl’s newsletter, and I’ve made these before. It’s been a while, though, and since Tina and I were in a bit of a celebratory mood for the SuperBowl (commercials and special episode of Glee to follow), I decided to make these. The only modification I made from the awesome original recipe was that I’m not a huge stickler for following recipes to the letter. Beyond that, these exist pretty much as Lisa invented them.

To start off with, take your jalapenos, slice in half lengthwise, and scoop out the seeds, stems, and any membranes. Take care not to touch your eyes because even though the jalapeno is not THAT hot of a pepper, the juice will still set your eyes on fire. Once halved and de-seeded, wash them with cold water.

In a coffee grinder, I ground up about half a cup of the Fiber one cereal “twigs” into a crumb consistency. I put in a bowl and seasoned with salt, garlic powder, and cracked black pepper.

In a small bowl, I combined about a quarter cup of cream cheese and about a quarter cup of shredded cheddar cheese. Again, these are estimations as I usually don’t measure with measuring cups. Mix well with salt, garlic powder, and cracked black pepper to taste.

Then, I scrambled two eggs (you can also use egg beaters, as in the original recipe, but I find eggs tastier and cheaper) for the egg wash. Using a spoon, I slathered the cream cheese mixture into the jalapeno halves until all were full.

With a greased cookie sheet beside me, I took turns, dipping each jalapeno halve into the egg mixture and then rolling it in the crumbs from the Fiber one cereal until it was well coated. When all were covered, they went into the oven at 350 degrees for twenty to twenty-five minutes. Jalapenos mellow out the longer they are cooked, so do less time for a hotter pepper (although twenty-five minutes still gave them quite a kick) or longer if you want a mellower pepper.

That’s all there is to it. Serve and eat.

I realize this isn’t a traditional veggie dish, but there was no meat in it, and it definitely served its purpose as a side. And after all, jalapeno peppers are full of capsaicin, which is supposed to help fight cancer and fight inflammation and is thermogenic and can allegedly help with weight loss, and vitamins A and C, which helps strengthen blood vessels and lower high blood pressure. Also, cultures around the world that traditionally use hot peppers like jalapenos also have significantly lower rates of heart attack and strokes than those cultures that do not. I think I may have to start eating more jalapenos. Stay tuned – you’ll definitely see me make other jalapeno recipes in the coming months!

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Veggie Dish #5 – Four Cheese Spinach Quiche

You would think after my post yesterday, I would have used farm fresh eggs for this dish. I did not. My thought was that the spinach and cheese would have overpowered the dish anyway, so any eggs would be suitable. I therefore decided to save my farm fresh eggs for dishes you can really taste the eggy goodness in and used regular white eggs.

For our fifth veggie dish of the year, and this one was the main entree this time, I made a Four Cheese Spinach Quiche! It could not have been easier and it was very tasty. I read several quiche recipes, decided to make mine crustless, and just ended up winging it as I went. Regardless, it came out amazing.

To start off with, I took a bunch of spinach and chopped them up into small strips.

In another bowl, I cracked open five eggs.

To said eggs, I tossed in about a quarter cup (or so – I’m horrible about measuring) of Romano and Parmesan Cheese.

On top of that cheese, I added about half a cup of shredded cheddar and mozzarella. To this, I also added some salt and cracked pepper. All of it, including the spinach, was mixed together and poured into a 8×8 inch baking dish that had been sprayed down with a little Pam.

It went into the oven at 400 degrees for about thirty minutes, and when it was no longer runny, we cut into it and served.

Delicious, even if it doesn’t have any meat in it. I know I probably have some vegan friends who are cringing at the prolific use of animal proteins in the form of eggs and cheese, but I’m sorry. We’re egg and cheese (and meat) eaters around here.

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Veggie Dish #4 – Roast Asparagus

Part of my plan in eating a new veggie dish (not necessarily new vegetable) was too experiment with things I don’t normally eat.

There are some vegetables that I love and would eat daily. I think tomatoes and cucumbers are proof that God loves us. Conversely, I think that asparagus and brussels sprouts are proof that evil still exists in the world.

I tried brussels sprouts last week and made them edible. Can I do the same for asparagus? I recently tried to find out, and I did so by finding the simplest roasting method I have ever heard.

It seriously takes about four minutes total to fix this dish, and that includes washing the vegetables AND the baking time. So for Veggie Dish #4, I present to you Roast Asparagus.

To start off with, wash the asparagus and cut (or break) off the ends. Place on a sheet of aluminum foil.

Drizzle a little olive oil on, roll them around to get them all covered, and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.

Place in the oven under the broiler on High for three minutes.

That’s it.

Serve. Eat.

So what’s the verdict? Tina loves it. This is her new favorite way to eat asparagus.

The same can be said of me, too. This is my favorite way to eat asparagus as well. Would I eat this of my own volition again? Only for the health benefits, because the taste is just acceptable. Asparagus just has a bitter, biting taste that I don’t care for.

Oh, and a quick tip – make sure you roast it all the way through. Asparagus that has not been cooked all the way through is even more bitter. The next dish (later this week) is a little different than what I’ve cooked previously, so stay tuned.

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